Woman Opens Up About Mom’s Illegal Gambling Operation | TODAY

Woman Opens Up About Mom’s Illegal Gambling Operation | TODAY


UNTIL RECENTLY WHEN SHE DECIDED TO SHARE THE TRUTH ABOUT HER TO SHARE THE TRUTH ABOUT HER MOTHER’S BUSINESS. MOTHER’S BUSINESS.>>I THINK EVERY FAMILY HAS>>I THINK EVERY FAMILY HAS SECRETS. SECRETS. ABSOLUTELY. ABSOLUTELY. I BELIEVE THAT IN OUR CASE, IT I BELIEVE THAT IN OUR CASE, IT WAS NOT A DARK SECRET AND NOT A WAS NOT A DARK SECRET AND NOT A TROUBLING ONE. TROUBLING ONE. IT WAS ACTUALLY A GOOD SECRET. IT WAS ACTUALLY A GOOD SECRET.>>Reporter: DAVIS KNEW FROM AN>>Reporter: DAVIS KNEW FROM AN EARLY AGE NEVER TO SPEAK EARLY AGE NEVER TO SPEAK PUBLICLY ABOUT HER MOTHER’S PUBLICLY ABOUT HER MOTHER’S WORK. WORK.>>WE SIMPLY KNEW THAT FOR HER>>WE SIMPLY KNEW THAT FOR HER PROTECTION, TO MAKE SURE THAT PROTECTION, TO MAKE SURE THAT SHE WAS ABLE TO STAY IN BUSINESS SHE WAS ABLE TO STAY IN BUSINESS AND THE AUTHORITIES DIDN’T FIND AND THE AUTHORITIES DIDN’T FIND OUT ABOUT IT, WE HAD TO KEEP OUT ABOUT IT, WE HAD TO KEEP THAT SECRET. THAT SECRET.>>Reporter: THAT’S BECAUSE HER>>Reporter: THAT’S BECAUSE HER MOM, SANDY DAVIS, WAS A NUMBERS MOM, SANDY DAVIS, WAS A NUMBERS RUNNER IN AN UNDERGROUND LOTTERY RUNNER IN AN UNDERGROUND LOTTERY BUSINESS IN DETROIT FOR MORE BUSINESS IN DETROIT FOR MORE THAN THREE DECADES. THAN THREE DECADES.>>MY DAD COULDN’T KEEP STEADY>>MY DAD COULDN’T KEEP STEADY WORK, AND THEN HE GOT ILL, AS WORK, AND THEN HE GOT ILL, AS WELL. WELL. SO MY MOM FOUND HERSELF IN THIS SO MY MOM FOUND HERSELF IN THIS PRECARIOUS SITUATION. PRECARIOUS SITUATION. MY MOM GOT INTO HER OWN PRETTY MY MOM GOT INTO HER OWN PRETTY UNORTHODOX BUSINESS. UNORTHODOX BUSINESS. I WOULD SEE HER EVERY DAY ON THE I WOULD SEE HER EVERY DAY ON THE PHONE TAKING HER CUSTOMERS’ PHONE TAKING HER CUSTOMERS’ BETS. BETS. THAT WAS LIKE THE DAYTIME THAT WAS LIKE THE DAYTIME LULLABY FOR ME. LULLABY FOR ME. IT MEANT THAT EVERYTHING WAS IT MEANT THAT EVERYTHING WAS WELL IN THE WORLD. WELL IN THE WORLD.>>Reporter: SANDY RAN THE>>Reporter: SANDY RAN THE BUSINESS FROM HER HOME FROM 34 BUSINESS FROM HER HOME FROM 34 YEARS, UNTIL SHE DIED FROM YEARS, UNTIL SHE DIED FROM CANCER IN 1992. CANCER IN 1992. FOR YEARS AFTER, HER DAUGHTER FOR YEARS AFTER, HER DAUGHTER STRUGGLED TO TELL PEOPLE ABOUT STRUGGLED TO TELL PEOPLE ABOUT HER PAST. HER PAST.>>I COULDN’T SAY THE THING THAT>>I COULDN’T SAY THE THING THAT I WAS MOST PROUD OF. I WAS MOST PROUD OF. HOW SHE HAD RUN THIS BUSINESS HOW SHE HAD RUN THIS BUSINESS AND HOW SHE HAD SUPPORTED US AND AND HOW SHE HAD SUPPORTED US AND GIVEN US ALL THESE GIVEN US ALL THESE OPPORTUNITIES. OPPORTUNITIES. SO THAT GOT HARDER AND HARDER AS SO THAT GOT HARDER AND HARDER AS I GOT OLDER. I GOT OLDER.>>Reporter: IT WASN’T UNTIL>>Reporter: IT WASN’T UNTIL 2009 WHEN HER SON ASKED ABOUT 2009 WHEN HER SON ASKED ABOUT HIS GRANDMOTHER THAT THE HIS GRANDMOTHER THAT THE FAMILY’S SECRET WAS NOW OUT IN FAMILY’S SECRET WAS NOW OUT IN THE OPEN. THE OPEN.>>THAT’S WHEN IT DAWNED ON ME>>THAT’S WHEN IT DAWNED ON ME THAT I HAD DONE SUCH A GOOD JOB THAT I HAD DONE SUCH A GOOD JOB OF KEEPING HER SECRET, THAT I OF KEEPING HER SECRET, THAT I HAD KEPT HER SECRET FROM MY OWN HAD KEPT HER SECRET FROM MY OWN CHILDREN. CHILDREN. I DECIDED AT THAT VERY MOMENT, I DECIDED AT THAT VERY MOMENT, THAT CANNOT CONTINUE. THAT CANNOT CONTINUE. THESE CHILDREN, MY CHILDREN, THESE CHILDREN, MY CHILDREN, NEED TO KNOW WHO THEIR NEED TO KNOW WHO THEIR GRANDMOTHER WAS. GRANDMOTHER WAS.>>GOOD STUFF.>>GOOD STUFF. SHE SHARES HER STORY IN THE SHE SHARES HER STORY IN THE PODCAST “FAMILY SECRETS,” HOSTED PODCAST “FAMILY SECRETS,” HOSTED BY BEST-SELLING AUTHOR DANI BY BEST-SELLING AUTHOR DANI SHAPIRO, WHO STARTED THE PODCAST SHAPIRO, WHO STARTED THE PODCAST AFTER FINDING OUT THE MAN WHO AFTER FINDING OUT THE MAN WHO RAISED HER WASN’T HER BIOLOGICAL RAISED HER WASN’T HER BIOLOGICAL FATHER. FATHER. DANI IS BACK WITH US THIS DANI IS BACK WITH US THIS MORNING. MORNING.>>GOOD MORNING.>>GOOD MORNING.>>YOU TALKED ABOUT WHY YOU>>YOU TALKED ABOUT WHY YOU DECIDED TO OPEN UP. DECIDED TO OPEN UP. TALK TO US A LITTLE MORE ABOUT TALK TO US A LITTLE MORE ABOUT THAT. THAT. IT MAKES COMPLETE SENSE, THAT IT MAKES COMPLETE SENSE, THAT YOU SAID YOU WANTED YOUR SON OR YOU SAID YOU WANTED YOUR SON OR KIDS TO KNOW THEIR GRANDMOTHER. KIDS TO KNOW THEIR GRANDMOTHER.>>EXACTLY.>>EXACTLY. THE TRUTH IS, I WAS ALWAYS PROUD THE TRUTH IS, I WAS ALWAYS PROUD OF HER. OF HER. YET, IT IS INTERESTING WITH YET, IT IS INTERESTING WITH SECRETS, YOU KNOW, YOU KEEP THEM SECRETS, YOU KNOW, YOU KEEP THEM AND KEEP ALL THE GOOD THINGS AND KEEP ALL THE GOOD THINGS THAT COME ALONG WITH THAT THAT COME ALONG WITH THAT SECRET, TOO. SECRET, TOO. SO I FOUND I WASN’T TALKING SO I FOUND I WASN’T TALKING ABOUT HER AT ALL. ABOUT HER AT ALL. THAT JUST DIDN’T DAWN ON ME THAT JUST DIDN’T DAWN ON ME UNTIL MY SON ASKED, WELL, WHAT’S UNTIL MY SON ASKED, WELL, WHAT’S GRANDMA? GRANDMA? WHAT WAS SHEREALIZED, YOU KNOW, WHAT WAS SHEREALIZED, YOU KNOW, TO COME CLEAN. TO COME CLEAN. ALL OF THE AMAZING THINGS THAT ALL OF THE AMAZING THINGS THAT MY MOTHER CONTRIBUTED TO THE MY MOTHER CONTRIBUTED TO THE WORLD AND HOW SHE SHAPED ME, WORLD AND HOW SHE SHAPED ME, THEY NEEDED TO KNOW. THEY NEEDED TO KNOW. THEN, OF COURSE, AFTER I DECIDED THEN, OF COURSE, AFTER I DECIDED THE CHILDREN NEEDED TO KNOW, I THE CHILDREN NEEDED TO KNOW, I DECIDED, YOU KNOW WHAT, EVERYONE DECIDED, YOU KNOW WHAT, EVERYONE NEEDS TO KNOW. NEEDS TO KNOW.>>IT IS NO SURPRISE YOU’RE>>IT IS NO SURPRISE YOU’RE PROUD. PROUD. SHE DID WHAT SHE NEEDED TO DO. SHE DID WHAT SHE NEEDED TO DO.>>EXACTLY.>>EXACTLY.>>TO MAKE THE HOME SHE WANTED>>TO MAKE THE HOME SHE WANTED YOU TO LIVE IN. YOU TO LIVE IN.>>YEAH.>>YEAH. SHE ALWAYS SAID, I HAVE TO MAKE SHE ALWAYS SAID, I HAVE TO MAKE A WAY OUT OF NO WAY. A WAY OUT OF NO WAY. SO SHE DECIDED THIS MADE SENSE. SO SHE DECIDED THIS MADE SENSE. SHE DIDN’T WANT TO JUST SURVIVE. SHE DIDN’T WANT TO JUST SURVIVE.>>YEAH.>>YEAH.>>SHE WANTED TO THRIVE.>>SHE WANTED TO THRIVE. SHE WANTED US TO THRIVE. SHE WANTED US TO THRIVE. SO THAT WAS HOW SHE FIGURED OUT SO THAT WAS HOW SHE FIGURED OUT A WAY TO DO IT. A WAY TO DO IT.>>IS IT TRUE THAT HER HUSTLE>>IS IT TRUE THAT HER HUSTLE STILL BENEFITS THE FAMILY STILL BENEFITS THE FAMILY FINANCIALLY? FINANCIALLY?>>IT IS TRUE, YES.>>IT IS TRUE, YES. I’M VERY FORTUNATE. I’M VERY FORTUNATE.>>SHE HAD A PRETTY SUCCESSFUL>>SHE HAD A PRETTY SUCCESSFUL NUMBERS RUNNING GAME. NUMBERS RUNNING GAME.>>YES.>>YES.>>THERE’S A STORY I READ, TELL>>THERE’S A STORY I READ, TELL ME IF THIS IS TRUE, YOU HAD A ME IF THIS IS TRUE, YOU HAD A NEW PAIR OF SHOES OR A NICE PAIR NEW PAIR OF SHOES OR A NICE PAIR OF SHOES, YOUR TEACHER ASKED HOW OF SHOES, YOUR TEACHER ASKED HOW YOUR MOM WAS ABLE TO AFFORD YOUR MOM WAS ABLE TO AFFORD THOSE? THOSE?>>YEAH.>>YEAH.>>WHAT HAPPENED?>>WHAT HAPPENED?>>BASICALLY, I WAS IN SCHOOL>>BASICALLY, I WAS IN SCHOOL ONE DAY, AND MY TEACHER SAID TO ONE DAY, AND MY TEACHER SAID TO ME, YOU SURE DO HAVE A LOT OF ME, YOU SURE DO HAVE A LOT OF SHOES. SHOES. I THOUGHT, YES, THAT’S TRUE. I THOUGHT, YES, THAT’S TRUE. SHE SAID, YOU KNOW WHAT, BEFORE SHE SAID, YOU KNOW WHAT, BEFORE YOU SIT DOWN, NAME ALL THE SHOES YOU SIT DOWN, NAME ALL THE SHOES YOU HAVE. YOU HAVE. I WAS ONLY 6 YEARS OLD. I WAS ONLY 6 YEARS OLD. I WAS IN THE FIRST GRADE. I WAS IN THE FIRST GRADE. SO I THOUGHT, THIS IS A TEST. SO I THOUGHT, THIS IS A TEST. I WANTED TO REALLY DO WELL ON I WANTED TO REALLY DO WELL ON THE TEST, SO I NAMED TEN PAIRS THE TEST, SO I NAMED TEN PAIRS OF SHOES. OF SHOES.>>WHAT HAPPENED WHEN YOU TELDOL>>WHAT HAPPENED WHEN YOU TELDOL YOUR MOTHER? YOUR MOTHER?>>I TOLD MY MOM, AND SHE GOT>>I TOLD MY MOM, AND SHE GOT ANGRY. ANGRY. I THOUGHT, MOM, I’M REALLY IN I THOUGHT, MOM, I’M REALLY IN TROUBLE, I FORGOT TO NAME THE TROUBLE, I FORGOT TO NAME THE 11th PAIR OF SHOES. 11th PAIR OF SHOES. MY TEACHER GOT UPSET WITH ME. MY TEACHER GOT UPSET WITH ME. MY MOM’S RESPONSE? MY MOM’S RESPONSE? SHE SAID, I CANNOT BELIEVE THAT. SHE SAID, I CANNOT BELIEVE THAT. THAT IS NONE OF HER BUSINESS. THAT IS NONE OF HER BUSINESS. SHE DECIDED TO TAKE ME NOT BACK SHE DECIDED TO TAKE ME NOT BACK TO SCHOOL TO CONFRONT THE TO SCHOOL TO CONFRONT THE TEACHER BUT TO SAKS FIFTH TEACHER BUT TO SAKS FIFTH AVENUE. AVENUE.>>TO GET A NEW PAIR OF SHOES.>>TO GET A NEW PAIR OF SHOES.>>I GOT A BEAUTIFUL, BEAUTIFUL>>I GOT A BEAUTIFUL, BEAUTIFUL PAIR OF YELLOW SHOES. PAIR OF YELLOW SHOES.>>DANI, ONE OF THE THINGS THAT>>DANI, ONE OF THE THINGS THAT STRIKES ME ABOUT THIS PODCAST STRIKES ME ABOUT THIS PODCAST IS, YOU KNOW, WE ALL THINK OUR IS, YOU KNOW, WE ALL THINK OUR FAMILY IS KIND OF SCREWED UP, FAMILY IS KIND OF SCREWED UP, AND THEN YOU REALIZE, THERE ARE AND THEN YOU REALIZE, THERE ARE SO MANY FAMILIES OUT THERE THAT SO MANY FAMILIES OUT THERE THAT HAVE SECRETS LIKE THIS. HAVE SECRETS LIKE THIS.>>YEAH.>>YEAH. I THINK ALMOST ALL FAMILIES DO. I THINK ALMOST ALL FAMILIES DO. YOU KNOW, THE TAG LINE FOR YOU KNOW, THE TAG LINE FOR FAMILY SECRETS IS, THE SECRETS FAMILY SECRETS IS, THE SECRETS THAT WE KEEP FROM OURSELVES, THE THAT WE KEEP FROM OURSELVES, THE SECRETS WE KEEP FROM OURSELVES, SECRETS WE KEEP FROM OURSELVES, THE SECRETS THAT ARE KEPT FROM THE SECRETS THAT ARE KEPT FROM US, RIGHT? US, RIGHT? THERE’S THIS WAY IN WHICH I THERE’S THIS WAY IN WHICH I THINK, IN FAMILIES, IN THE NAME THINK, IN FAMILIES, IN THE NAME OF LOVE, IN THE NAME OF OF LOVE, IN THE NAME OF PROTECTION, THAT WE TEND TO PROTECTION, THAT WE TEND TO BELIEVE THAT WE’RE DOING THE BELIEVE THAT WE’RE DOING THE RIGHT THING BY KEEPING SECRETS. RIGHT THING BY KEEPING SECRETS. IN THIS STORY, YOU KNOW, I THINK IN THIS STORY, YOU KNOW, I THINK ONE OF THE THINGS THAT’S SO ONE OF THE THINGS THAT’S SO BEAUTIFUL ABOUT IT IS IT WAS A BEAUTIFUL ABOUT IT IS IT WAS A STORY THAT WAS — IT WAS A STORY THAT WAS — IT WAS A SECRET THAT WAS MEANT TO SECRET THAT WAS MEANT TO PROTECT, AND DID PROTECT. PROTECT, AND DID PROTECT. IT WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN GOOD IF IT WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN GOOD IF YOU SAID TO YOUR FIRST GRADE YOU SAID TO YOUR FIRST GRADE TEACHER, YOU KNOW, ACTUALLY, MY TEACHER, YOU KNOW, ACTUALLY, MY MAMA RUNS THE NUMBERS, RIGHT? MAMA RUNS THE NUMBERS, RIGHT?>>EXACTLY.>>EXACTLY.>>YOUR FAMILY WOULDN’T HAVE HAD>>YOUR FAMILY WOULDN’T HAVE HAD THE FUTURE YOU DID, HAD YOU DONE THE FUTURE YOU DID, HAD YOU DONE THAT. THAT. ULTIMATELY, ALL THOSE YEARS ULTIMATELY, ALL THOSE YEARS LATER, SECRETS DID NEED TO COME LATER, SECRETS DID NEED TO COME OUT. OUT. BECAUSE THEY ALWAYS DO, BECAUSE THEY ALWAYS DO, ULTIMATELY. ULTIMATELY.>>NOW, IT MUST FEEL GOOD TO>>NOW, IT MUST FEEL GOOD TO BRAG ON YOUR MOM. BRAG ON YOUR MOM.>>IT IS AMAZING TO THINK I KEPT>>IT IS AMAZING TO THINK I KEPT THIS SECRET BECAUSE I WAS AFRAID THIS SECRET BECAUSE I WAS AFRAID OF WHAT PEOPLE WOULD THINK ABOUT OF WHAT PEOPLE WOULD THINK ABOUT HER. HER. NOW, EVERYONE IS SAYING TO ME NOW, EVERYONE IS SAYING TO ME THAT THEY’RE ACTUALLY INSPIRED THAT THEY’RE ACTUALLY INSPIRED BY HER STORY. BY HER STORY. IT IS A KIND OF IRONIC THING. IT IS A KIND OF IRONIC THING. THE POWER THAT SECRETS CAN THE POWER THAT SECRETS CAN BRING. BRING.>>RIGHT.>>RIGHT.>>ONCE YOU TELL THEM.>>ONCE YOU TELL THEM.>>LIKE CRAIG SAID, EVERYBODY>>LIKE CRAIG SAID, EVERYBODY HAS SOMETHING. HAS SOMETHING.>>EVERYBODY.>>EVERYBODY.>>THANK YOU BOTH FOR BEING>>THANK YOU BOTH FOR BEING HERE. HERE. YOU CAN HEAR MORE OF THIS

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